I finally got some work done in the vegetable garden last weekend. Prepared to clean everything out and start over, I was pleasantly surprised to find several plants that have managed to get a second wind. In fact, the kale looked better than it did last fall and is putting out loads of tender new growth. The sorrel has been completely steadfast, never faltering, through rain, snow, wind and way too many gray days. I’ll have to say, it gave me hope. If I could transfer some of that aliveness to myself, I might emerge from winter not quite as bedraggled as I’ve been feeling lately. A quick infusion of green goodness in the form of a kale smoothie really hit the spot.
But first I need to show you how beautifully my kale has been growing while I’ve been neglecting it completely.
Never underestimate the power of even a little bit of sunshine.
My favorite, Lacinato kale, is sweeter than ever after a long winter.
And the sorrel, despite a dusting of frost, is mild and lemony.
I couldn’t wait to take a bowl out into the garden and snip off enough for a smoothie. Scissors in hand, I even found some overwintered mint to add to the mix.
Back in the kitchen, I had some italian parsley and a few fennel fronds in the fridge. I also added a banana and some ginger to my smoothie. The banana because I wanted to make it substantial enough to count as a meal and the ginger because I love the flavor when mixed with kale. I would suggest trying other fruits — I’ve seen recipes with apples, pears, pineapple and mango. I know it may be hard to imagine kale with fruit of any kind but you’ll have to trust me on this one. The banana tasted great and I loved the thicker texture without adding yogurt or milk.
Kale Smoothie Recipe
Ingredients: This is where you get to use whatever sounds good to you. I used about 2 cups of mixed greens — kale, sorrel, herbs, lettuce, even a small collard leaf or two/ 1 banana/ a glass of water (use the glass you’ll be drinking from and fill it about 3/4 of the way full)/ A couple of ice cubes/ 1 T minced ginger (optional)
Directions: Wash the tender greens and herbs/ Place in a blender with banana, water, ice cubes & ginger/ Blend (I used the liquify button).
Talk about instant gratification. Green smoothies are so nutritious and easy that I could almost imagine going on some kind of cleanse. Almost.